PEOPLE WHO MISSED YESHUA’S LOVE
THE RICH YOUNG RULER (Matt. 19: 16-30; Mk. 10:17-31; Lk. 18:18-30)
The rich young ruler had been trying to be good all his life. “all these I have kept from my youth up.” (Mt. & Lk. KJV) He feels he IS good because he has the blessing of wealth from God to prove it! (Deut. 28:12-13)
Maybe he was expecting only compliments. And it seemed he WAS getting affirmed when he could honestly say he had kept all those commandments. He may have been expecting a pat on the back saying, “Wow, you have? Really? That’s wonderful. Why, you don’t lack anything. You are already inheriting eternal life.”
And of all things, Yeshua asked him to give up the very thing that proved he was good—the stamp of approval—the Scriptural stamp—the blessing of wealth. Perhaps he was shocked and offended—hurt deeply—to have someone dare to tell him he wasn’t completely good!! As were the disciples later! (“greatly astounded” nrsv “exceedingly amazed” kjv Matt. 19:25). Mk. 10:22 “He went away grieving.” Was he just grieving his riches or was he grieving because someone so good and marvelous had offended him, had not affirmed him???
Yeshua looked on him and loved him (Mk.10:21). Yeshua invited the man to come and be his companion—to come and follow Him. But the Rich Young Ruler failed to see the LOVE. All he saw was criticism and condemnation. He saw only the things he had to give up—his riches and his position of authority.
Yeshua is looking on you and loving you, too. Can you see his look of love? Or are you missing his loving gaze? Are you hearing only his hard-to-follow directions? What is the one thing you lack—the one thing that makes you look good to the world that He is telling you to let go of; to give up and come and follow Him? He loves you. He longs to have you as his companion.
THE ELDER BROTHER (Lk. 15:11-32)
(From my journal Mar 20, 01)
The elder brother is saved—he’s in the father’s house, but he isn’t happy there. He fails to see his father’s great love. His focus is all on trying to be good. Vs 29: “Listen!! For all these years I’ve been working like a SLAVE (!!) for you, and I have NEVER disobeyed your command.”
He was out of touch of the pity he should have had on his brother for what he was missing out on. Instead he was focused on trying to prove he was better than his brother by working so hard and never disobeying. He was too full of jealousy over his brother getting to go out and have fun all these years, and now getting a party for it.
He missed seeing the showering of love and celebration he himself could have been enjoying from his father all this time.
He has separated himself so far from the father that he is unaware of all his father’s plans. Vs 25 “was in the field, and when he approached the house, he heard music and dancing.” It takes a long time to butcher a calf and cut up all the meat and cook it and make it fancy enough for a party; to decorate for a party; to gather all the friends and neighbors, and musicians, and dancers, etc. This would have caused a lot of commotion. You would think he would have notice something strange going on. So he had to be in the far away field for a long time to be that out of touch.
He doesn’t have to work like a slave. His father has slaves (vs 22 and 26), and hired hands (vs 19). He could have been treated like a son, an equal, a friend. Vs 31 “All that I have is yours.” The younger brother wanted to be treated like a hired hand, but this elder brother was acting like an unpaid slave.
He wasn’t in close fellowship with his father. When he talks about celebrating, it is with his friends, not his father. “…yet you have NEVER given EVEN a young goat so that I can celebrate with my friends.” Notice it isn’t: “so I can celebrate with you.” He has pent-up anger from years back. He has friends, but he is not friends with his father. He lives with the father but is not really with him. He doesn’t realize the abundant blessing and privilege it is to be with the father.
He misses the deeply loving words, “Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.” The father didn’t speak in the past tense here: Son, you have been always with me.” He spoke in the present tense, “You ARE always with me.” The father seems to realize that the prodigal son may leave again. But he trusts this elder brother to always stay, to always be faithful. What affirmation! What love! But does the elder son see that Love? It seems not. He doesn’t realize that his brother has been missing out, because he was missing out himself, too.
Are you living in the father’s house and yet missing out on his love? Are you working hard to be a good Christian, and feeling jealous of the other “Christians” who are getting away with sin, and are squandering their lives on pleasure, wasting good money and time that could be used for the Gospel. Are you annoyed that they are having fun while you are trying to keep yourself upright? Are you upset because they are getting away with it, and even seem to be getting celebrated for it, and you get ignored? Can you stop and listen to the father’s loving words, “____(your name), you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.” Can you start to realize that it is you who has daily access to the greatest pleasure on earth and in heaven—close fellowship with the father?
THE PRODIGAL SON
He missed out on his father’s love because of his desire for independence and pleasure. He couldn’t wait to get away. The only thing that was holding him there was the money. He left “a few days later.” He didn’t even miss his father all those years until he had squandered everything. Even that wasn’t enough to make him long for his father. He had to be starving and feeding pigs before he thought of his father at all. Still then, he didn’t know how much his father loved him and missed him. He thought he would have to choose his words carefully just to persuade his father to let him be a hired hand. He has no clue of the high honor his father is waiting to shower upon him.
Are you missing out? Do you feel worlds away from your Father’s love? Are you letting your longing for independence and/or pleasure and fun keep you from staying near and enjoying His delight in you? Are you starving and feeding “pigs.” Is Yeshua looking down the road longingly every morning to see if you are going to come to him today? Is his heart broken missing you?
MARTHA (Lk. 10:38-41; Jn. 11:1- 12:2)
She had the friendship of the Holy Messiah, the Creator of the Universe, the Son of God. She said she believed that he was the Messiah, the Son of God (Jn. 11:27). But did she really believe it deep in her heart? Because she had the audacity to rebuke him and tell him what to do, as if she knew better than he did: as if her opinions were more important than what Yeshua was doing and saying. She found fault with the spotless Lamb of God!
Lk 10:41 Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.”
Jn 11:39 “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” She is almost telling Yeshua that he doesn’t know what he is doing, that he is too dumb to know that a dead body stinks.
The Son of God is in her home speaking His precious words.
Jn. 6:63 “The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.”
Jn. 14:10 “The words I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. ”
Jn. 8:28 “…that I do nothing on my own, but I speak these things as the Father instructed me.
Jn. 8:31 “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples.”
But she doesn’t sit down and listen to those life-giving words. She “distracted by her many tasks” or as Yeshua said, “by many things.” (Lk. 10: 40, 41) What could possible have been more important than listening to Yeshua’s words?
Maybe you think feeding Him and serving Him was important. Somebody had to do it, you might be saying. But this was the Man who turned water into wine, and who fed five thousand people! She did NOT need to worry about food around Him! Was serving Him food more important than a relationship with Him?
Even after Yeshua brought her brother back to life, she still doesn’t have the awe of worship and gratefulness in her heart. She has changed a bit. She serves in silence and doesn’t join in the rebuke of Mary using costly ointment. But she still doesn’t sit in reverence and listen to what Yeshua has to say. He is going to be gone in a week. She has no more time to listen to Him face to face. But she misses the opportunity. She is content to let others listen while she stays busy.
Yeshua is in your house, too. Are you sitting down and listening to Him? Or are you distracted by many things? Do you often think you know what’s going on better than others around you, so much so that you don’t hesitate to let them know? Are you always correcting? Women do you do this to your husband? Your pastor? Other leaders? If so, what makes you think you wouldn’t have done it to the Son of God?
PEOPLE WHO SOAKED IN HIS LOVE:
John saw Yeshua’s love for him. He called himself the disciple whom Yeshua loved. He sat next to Yeshua and leaned on Him at the Last Supper. He stayed close to Yeshua’s heart. He listened carefully to Yeshua’s every word. So carefully that he was able to record them in a book for all generations to find life in.
When someone sees how much Yeshua loves them, and knows it for sure deep in the core of their being, they are filled with love for Yeshua. John loved Yeshua so much, that he cast fear aside and boldly went to the cross and stood by Yeshua as Yeshua was dying.
John’s writings drip with Yeshua’s love. All he can talk about in his letters is God’s love. Women’s Bible Study Fellowship says, “His (John’s) intimate relationship with the Person in Whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge ultimately qualified him to write one of the most philosophical and mature books in existence…. We love the book of John…because John reveals the Person of Yeshua to us so intimately and completely.” That took a full realization of Yeshua’s abounding, unfailing, personal love.
(From my journal Aug . 2, 2000) In Exodus 33, Moses asks to see God’s Glory. He got to see God’s back. He got to have God’s presence go with him. He got to see fire, smoke, lightning, thunder, and hear trumpets, but not see God’s face. John got to see Yeshua’s face in Rev. 1:16. Yeshua’s face was “like the sun shining in full force.” John wrote Yeshua’s words in Jn.11:40 that if you believed you would “see the Glory of God.” John believed, and loved, and he saw the full Glory of God.
MARY (Lk. 10:38-41; Jn. 12:1-8; Matt. 26:6-13; Mk 14:3-9; Lk. 7:44-47)
Mary found what is best: fellowship with Yeshua. Every time we see Mary, she is at Yeshua’s feet. Mary herself speaks very little, but Yeshua says a lot about her. Mary treasures every word out of Yeshua’s mouth. She “sat at his feet and listened to what he was saying” (Lk. 10:39). She sat and soaked in his love. Then she poured out that love back on him in adoration and extravagant worship. And the fragrance of that worship filled the whole house (Jn. 12:3).
Nothing is more important in Mary’s life than being with Yeshua. She focuses only on him. She doesn’t even notice her criticizers. She doesn’t defend herself to them. She only sees Yeshua and his Love for her. This makes her love him deeply. She wants to show him how much she loves him; to show him the depth of her worship and gratitude. Mary ministered to Yeshua.
Tommy Tenney says in Extreme God Chasers, p. 132 (talking about when Mary anointed his head at Simon the leper’s house in Mark 14), “If all the apostles were present, there were at least 12 other people in that room that day, and not one of them attained the intimacy that she obtained that day. They missed it, even though they were good people like Peter, James, and John, (and Martha). If the apostles could miss it, so can we! We can be so busy being a disciple and doing the work that we miss the worship!”
P. 134 Yeshua Himself said that she did it “for My burial” (Mt. 26:12). “Just think of it. He’s hanging on the cross, suspended between Heaven and earth as though unworthy of both, abandoned by all, breathing His last agonizing breaths.
“But what’s that He smells…more than the salty smell of blood trickling down His fractured face, stronger than the noise of dice thrown b the soldiers, overpowering the jeers of the Jewish priests? It’s the fragrance of past worship, captured in the locks of His hair…He smells the oil from the alabaster box! The memory of the worship of an ‘anointer’ strengthens His resolve, and He ‘finishes the task at hand.’ ”
After Yeshua died, Mary could not go on with her life without him. She had to find him. Because of her devotion, she got to be the first person to see him resurrected.
Tommy Tenney continues on p. 134. “This same woman who anointed Him in His life witnessed the crucifixion and said, ‘I can’t leave Him unanointed in His death.’ As she carried yet another compound of precious spices to anoint the Lord’s body in the tomb. She found His tomb empty and again felt her heart break with emptiness as she began to bitterly weep and cry. Oh, the love of an anointer! They are willing even to pour anointing over dead dreams!”
When a person does learn to love Yeshua, and make Yeshua the most important thing in life, he or she gets criticized by others. Peter was a little jealous or something, about John. He said, “Lord, what about him?” Yeshua said, “…What is that to you? Follow Me!”
Mary was criticized by her very own sister for spending time with Yeshua! Important people like Yeshua’s disciples criticized her expressing her love to him. But she didn’t have to defend herself. Yeshua rebuked her criticizers Himself. Yeshua said, “Mary has found what is best and it won’t be taken away from her.”
Do you want to see Yeshua’s abundant, awesome love for you personally. Yes, you know Yeshua loves you, but do you really know know it?
How can we begin to soak in His love like John and Mary?
By treasuring His every Word. Every word in the Scriptures is His Word. The Scripture is “God breathed.” Sit at His feet. Lean on His breast. Stay close to His heart and listen to His Word.
Read His Word. Meditate on His Word. Pray His Word. Obey His Word. Abide in His Word. Let His Word abide in you. Soon it will become personal Words of Love whispered into your heart. Soon you will find what is best, and it won’t be taken away from you either.